Important Questions to Ask before Choosing a Nursing Home

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With over 16,000 nursing homes in the US today, choosing the right facility for your loved one can be a difficult and overwhelming decision. Before selecting a nursing home, it is important to visit several reputable providers to evaluate the medical care, quality of life, and safety precautions available at each facility. Read our following guide to learn some of the most important questions to ask before choosing a nursing home.

Medical Care

When visiting nursing homes, it is important to talk with the administrators and medical staff about the type of medical care provided at the facility. Consider asking any of the following questions about medical care:

  • How often is the doctor on site?
  • What is the nurse-to-patient ratio?
  • What is the turnover rate of your nursing staff?
  • What hospital arrangements do you have for emergencies?
  • What type of preventative health care do you provide?

Quality of Life

One of the hardest challenges for nursing home residents is the loss of independence. It is important to evaluate the social environment of the facility to determine if it is a good fit for your loved one. Consider asking any of the following quality of life questions:

  • What is the daily schedule?
  • Are residents free to plan their day?
  • Can residents choose what type of food they want?
  • What type of social activities are available each day?
  • What are the visiting hours?

Safety

The safety of your loved one should be the top priority of the nursing home you select. Only visit facilities like ours that are fully accredited by the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Health Care Organizations. Consider asking any of the following safety questions:

  • Are you accredited by the state and JCAHO?
  • Are you a certified Medicare/Medicaid provider?
  • How often are the residents checked during the day?
  • Who helps the residents with bathing?
  • Do you do nightly bed checks?
  • How do you prevent falls?

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